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Recommending that Attorney General Eric Holder Be Found in Contempt of Congress

Floor Speech

Location: Washington, DC


Mr. BOEHNER. I thank my colleague for yielding.

It's important for the American people to know how we got here and to know the facts of this case.

The Congress asked the Justice Department for the facts related to Fast and Furious and the events that led to the death of U.S. Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry. The Justice Department did not provide the facts and the information that we've requested. Instead, the information came from people outside the Department, people who wanted to do the right thing.

In addition to not providing the information, the administration admitted misleading Congress, actually retracting a letter it had sent 10 months earlier.

I think all Members understand this is a very serious matter. The Terry family wants to know how this happened, and they have every right to have their answers. And the House needs to know how this happened, and it's our constitutional duty to find out.

So the House Oversight and Government Reform Committee issued a lawful and narrowly tailored subpoena. We've been patient, giving the Justice Department every opportunity to comply so we can get to the bottom of this for the Terry family. We showed more than enough good faith, but the White House has chosen to invoke executive privilege. That leaves us no other options. The only recourse left to the House is to continue seeking the truth and to hold the Attorney General in contempt of Congress.

Now, I don't take this matter lightly. I, frankly, hoped it would never come to this. The House's focus is on jobs and on the economy. But no Justice Department is above the law, and no Justice Department is above the Constitution, which each of us has sworn an oath to uphold.

So I ask the Members of this body to come together and to support this resolution so we can seek the answers that the Terry family and the American people deserve.


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